Time in Yeppoon

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July 10th 2013
Published: June 6th 2015
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After my awesome birthday weekend (awesome apart from cleaning out the toilet) at the Keppel Islands, we settled into life as land-lubbers again, spending the whole 4 weeks at Naomi's parents' house at Lammermoor beach, and getting stuck into the jobs that needed doing.

During this time we really enjoyed the extra living space and level ground, and Alex thrived in it too, developing his skills with kicking and throwing balls, learning to ride a scooter, and spending time with his cousins Jordy and Lucia. It was such a relief to not have to keep an eye on Alex all the time as he could run around the house/garden on his own in safety and of course all the baby-sitting from Cheryl (grandma) was greatly appreciated as it freed us up to get more done.

The first job was the toilet. Although it was no longer blocked it was leaking slowly from the solid piped base.... worse still this was from the exit side. Perhaps this had been happening for some time, which might explain why Naomi blamed me for making the toilet smell of pee sometimes.... thought I was just suffering bad aim!

Instead of trying to
down the cock-pit hatchdown the cock-pit hatchdown the cock-pit hatch

gives side access to engine
replace this part or more likely having to replace the whole toilet we decided to make this the new store room and open up the en-suite toilet. This had the advantage of spreading the weight in the boat more evenly and less chance of waking Alex for late night visits. On the down side we have to listen to each other pee when in bed (a major flaw with any en-suite I think) and it may cause some inconvenience at night if we have guests, though we could just issue a night time bucket. The other change is that the ceiling is low over the toilet itself so I can no longer pee standing up - how demasculinizing! - but I guess solves any aim problems I may or may not had.

Of course nothing is that straight forward on a boat. The new store room had a leaky hatch which needed fixing (had been no big problem when it was a shower/toilet room). So we took off the hatch, with a plan to reseal the acrylic pane, to find there was a crack in the acrylic and also in the hinge of the frame itself. We took the acrylic to a window shop in Yeppoon so they could make a new pane - they said they would have to order the material in and would have a quote ready in a day or two - it would have been done in a day or two on the Gold Coast! Then took the frame to a welder who said the rubber seal would have to be removed.... not knowing what was involved putting a new one on this was becoming too hard and decided we could live with crack in the frame as it would be kept shut all the time.

Two days passed, then three and we still couldn't get the quote for the acrylic. They were now saying they would have to get an off-cut from a shop in Rockhampton as it was too much to buy a whole new sheet. Next day they said they couldn't do it at all! This had now fallen into the too hard basket and we decided we would just put sealant over the cracks and with it not moving it should be no problem.

So cleaned all parts up, resealed in the pane, let it harden up on
the big revealthe big revealthe big reveal

pulling off the masking tape
the patio table for a few days before we put it back on the boat, and then we were able to move all the stores from the other toilet.

The wheels in a couple of our pulley blocks were broken and this can damage the rope so we were keen to replace them, but could not find replacements in Yeppoon. Will have to wait until we reach a town with a Whitworths.

Knowing our VHF radio was not much good, we bought a brand new one from Keoghs on the Gold Coast, the Lowrance Link 8 that I had read about on the internet. It has DSC (digital selective calling) which is pretty standard on new VHFs now but also a receiver for AIS (automatic identification system) which a lot sailors now say is a really important for avoiding collisions (of course it wasn't important 5 years ago when it wasn't available for small boats!). Keoghs said they had not seen any yet as they were new to Australia but they would put me on the waiting list along with 10 others at the time. About a week later they let me know they would be sending it via a delivery company soon.

The following Monday Naomi got a message to say delivery had been attempted and a note had been left. Funny as we had been home at the time. We called the delivery company Fastway and they agreed to try to deliver it again tuesday at the same time. We never found a note.

So the next day we waited with door open, and then we were kicking a ball around on the front garden when we saw a girl driving a tray-back truck with parcels pass us. A minute later she passed us again even though we were waving at her. We called the Rocky office and they confirmed it was their truck and gave me the number of the driver. So called her, and asked if she could come back and why she hadn't stopped. She said she would return on her next run in 3 hours! I insisted that she come back now as she had only left and we didn't want to wait for her again. She argued that she was too far away now " I can go a long way in 10 minutes", but then later she changed her mind saying that she would return but if I were rude she would take the package back to Rocky. Naomi had been listening in and said I had been quite polite.

She duly soon returned, hopped out the truck and barely looked at me as she passed over the package, ignoring my requests to talk to her. I was still curious how a delivery company expects to deliver goods without stopping!?!?!

Anyway with that drama over I had the daunting task of cutting a hole in the wall next to the navigation desk to mount it. But it was a perfect fit, looked really smart, and wiring it up was easy as I had a couple of free spots at the switchboard I had fitting nearby some months ago, and the antennae cable was just long enough to reach. So now we have a radio working well and with a nice load speaker to listen out for calls.

We cleaned the hull with hull cleaner but couldn't quite get rid of the dirty marks at the bow. A shipwright has suggested pool acid so maybe we'll try this one day. We were determined to paint the upper stripe on our hull- having done the lower "boot" stripe when she was up on the hard stand. So this was a job we had meticulously done before but its amazing how much you can forget over time.

Preparing it involved sanding the old paint, which was difficult at the edges without sanding the white hull and doing it by hand was painstakingly slow. So then masked the edges and cautiously did it with the electric orbital sander which was lot better. But when it came to giving it a final clean, mostly to remove residue from the masking tape, we found old paint was getting smudged into the edges that we had been so careful to protect. Foolishly we didn't stop straight away when I noticed as we assumed acetone would easily clean this away... it didn't. So the stripe would now be a little thicker to cover up these imperfections.

Then we put on the final masking tape and got the undercoat on. Each coat of paint had to be timed to coincide with Alex's midday sleep so that we weren't interrupted. One thing in our favour was that the paint shop in town had the undercoat we needed and even the right colour topcoat we were using - his last pot. Especially lucky as we had already started the job!

I never got around to finishing this blog... lots of jobs done but just not as interesting as travelling



6th June 2015

Glad to see you finally published this blog...
better late than never. So now you have your boat in Malaysia. Do you ever plan to go further than the east coast of the Indian Ocean?
16th June 2015

cruising plans
Hi Bob, we will stay in this area on our next cruising trip and then plan to travel around to the east side of Malaysia / Thailand. At some point across to Borneo, and maybe work our way back to Australia

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